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NIDA partners with Screen Territory and Arts NT in major skills boost initiative

Miranda Tapsell and Rob Collins

Above: Territorians Rob Collins and Miranda Tapsell are prominent alumni of NIDA.
Left: Miranda Tapsell in NIDA’s production of Moons and Mirrors, Parade Playhouse, 2007
Right: Rob Collins in NIDA's production of Othello,  Parade Studio, 2012

Screen Territory together with Arts NT are launching an ambitious new partnership with Australia’s world renowned National Institute of Dramatic Art (NIDA) to boost skills and professional development for Territorians across the creative industries.

The collaboration between the two Northern Territory Government agencies, Screen Territory and Arts NT, is a landmark initiative being the first time that two state or territory agencies in the Australian screen and arts sectors have collaborated to provide training opportunities across both sectors.

Development of skillsets that are transferable across Screen and Arts in the Northern Territory will support industry growth, employment and long term sustainability for a sector which has seen a significant increase in local and inbound screen productions as a result of increased investment by the Northern Territory Government.

The program will present a series of face-to-face NIDA training courses in specific areas designed to fill skills shortages and build the talent pool of Territory creatives and production professionals including screen practitioners, theatre and live events staff, performing arts, publicity and promotion.

A number of one-day courses for Territory high school students will also be run in conjunction with the workshop program, focused on providing NT youth with a taste-test for future study or career progression in the screen and arts industries.

The training program will commence early April and will deliver 11 focused training workshops subsidised by both Screen Territory and Arts NT, comprising Producing for Stage and Screen, Writing for the Screen, Acting Technique, Acting Technique for Screen, Directing Actors for Screen, Make-up for Screen, Costume Design Essentials, Props Making, The Confident Voice, Screen Acting on Location, Audition Preparation and Screen Tests.

Screen Territory Director Jennie Hughes said a key consideration of Screen Territory’s funding contribution to local and inbound screen production is the direct employment of Territorians including specialist screen production crew and the broader benefits to the creative sector.

“Production has increased significantly in the Territory, particularly with premium scripted content, and this has highlighted the need to build capacity and broaden the skills base to create more employment opportunities for Territorians to work in the screen sector.

“We are delighted to be working with NIDA and our colleagues at Arts NT to build pathways and provide opportunities for cross collaboration across the Screen and Arts sectors. This initiative forms part of our commitment to Ausfilm’s National Workforce Capacity Working Group of which Screen Territory and NIDA are both members,” Ms Hughes said.

Arts NT A/Director Georgia Thomas said Arts NT welcomes the opportunity to partner with Screen Territory to provide this exciting initiative for Northern Territory creative industries practitioners.

“This initiative strongly supports the goals of the Northern Territory’s Creative Industries Strategy, in particular the creation of new pathways for business, employment and career development. The program’s targeted training and skills development opportunities will undoubtedly deliver great outcomes and benefits for participants and the sector,” Ms Thomas said.

CEO of the National Institute of Dramatic Art Liz Hughes said: “I applaud the strategic initiative and ambition of Screen Territory and Arts NT to support the development of the creative industries as a central pillar of economic development in the NT.

“NIDA’s training is perfectly positioned to realise this exciting ambition. We are looking forward to commencing practical skills training for NT storytellers across a range of disciplines. Many super talented creative individuals are from the NT, including a number of successful NIDA alumni, and we are excited by the potential of this program to provide a pathway for emerging creatives.”

Proud Territorian, NIDA Graduate and Award-winning actor Rob Collins said: "NIDA provided me with an outstanding base for building my craft and launching a career in both Screen and Arts, and I am excited for my fellow Territorians to have access to the world-class facilities and training of NIDA through this program.

“The Northern Territory is rich with storytellers and talented creatives who, with access to this kind of in person training, will have greater networks and opportunities to realise their potential. I look forward to working with them in the future!" Mr Collins said.

Ausfilm CEO Kate Marks said: “Today’s announcement from Screen Territory, NIDA and Arts NT on their partnership to boost skills development opportunities for Northern Territory screen practitioners is a welcome initiative and is aligned with the national focus to grow Australia’s below the line workforce capacity as underpinned by the National Workforce Capacity Working Group”.

For more information on the NIDA courses on offer and scheduled delivery please visit To enrol in a course please visit

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